A a collection of character-driven crime stories ... Goldberg understands that the way to write about organized crime is to write about the people who live in that world. Yes, they are criminals, but most of them aren’t villains. A sterling collection that showcases the author’s gifts as a storyteller.
Hapless mobsters, corrupt cops, and other fated losers play out the string in interconnected stories ... These are stories Elmore Leonard would love—not just because the razor-sharp Goldberg wastes no words in cutting to the heart of his stories, but also because he highlights the humanity and inner lives of even his most bent characters ... A thoroughly enjoyable collection by a bona fide original.
For a crime writer, a sense of place means as much as clean prose and a morally tormented hero. So a lot of what makes Tod Goldberg’s lively, often entertainingly snarky story collection The Low Desert so cohesive is its preferred destination for murder and despair: West Coast exurbia ... [Goldberg's] style, in the best stories here, is distinguished by a gallows humor featuring men who are just smart enough to work a grift but not bright enough to escape the ensuing trouble.